Rounds

News and notes on guns in America

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People gather in downtown Raleigh, North Carolina, to protest stay-at-home orders due to COVID-19. [AP Photo/Gerry Broome]

Daily Bulletin: Counter-protesters Greet Armed Demonstrators in North Carolina

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WHAT TO KNOW TODAY

There were three mass shootings over the weekend… Thirteen people were shot at a memorial service on Saturday night in Bogalusa, Louisiana, about 80 miles north of New Orleans. No arrests were made. On Sunday, four people were wounded in a shooting during a party at a short-term rental house in Charleston, South Carolina, and one person was killed and three others injured in a shooting in District Heights, Maryland.

…and another shooting sparked by an argument over social distancing. A security guard at a liquor store in Flint, Michigan shot a customer in the ankle on Friday after the man lashed out physically in frustration over the the store’s pandemic-imposed occupancy limits. A day earlier in Aurora, Colorado, an employee at a Waffle House was shot and wounded after confronting a customer who refused to wear a mask.

Gun rights protesters in North Carolina ignored police calls to disarm. For at least the second weekend in a row, a band of demonstrators clad in tactical gear and carrying assault-style rifles marched through downtown Raleigh. This time, the group was met by a slightly larger contingent of counter-protestors, as well as police officers who told them that state law prohibits protesting while armed. No arrests were made.

The Chicago neighborhoods with the highest rates of gun violence also have the highest rates of COVID-19. That’s according to a Chicago Tribune analysis of data from the Chicago Police Department and Illinois Department of Public Health. The newspaper spoke with a woman from one of those communities, West Garfield Park, who has lost three sons and a grandson to shootings. “I mean, you looking the devil in the eye when you see all this,” she said. “A person don’t have a chance.” ICYMI: Earlier this month, The Trace reported on the challenges that the pandemic is presenting for street-level gun violence intervention programs.

Gun rights advocates are using Zoom to teach firearm safety to first-time buyers. Former Facebook employee Chuck Rossi, co-founder of the Silicon Valley gun rights group Open Source Defense, has been giving tutorials to people across the country who bought firearms Bec cause of pandemic fears. The Guardian’s Lois Beckett observed one of his sessions with a new gun owner, who had become panicky after he had to borrow toilet paper from his parents because the supermarket shelves were empty. “People take from those who have,” the unidentified student said. “Why not be prepared?”

DATA POINT

The Gun Violence Archive has recorded at least 15 shootings in the U.S. stemming from altercations or anxieties related to the coronavirus or the public health precautions it has required. The incidents have left nine people dead and 10 injured.